Faith schools could be outlawed after Jewish test case, says Balls

EVENING STANDARD, 24 Oct 2009: Faith schools could be stripped of the right to select pupils on the basis of their religion, the Standard has learned.

The Government fears that a landmark court case means 100 state and private Jewish schools are breaking race laws by choosing pupils who conform to their beliefs. Many Christian, Muslim and Sikh schools could also be forced to give equal priority to non-believers or pupils of other faiths.

Lawyers acting for Children’s Secretary Ed Balls are urging the highest court in the land to protect the centuries-old tradition of schools educating children on religious lines. The minister’s warning comes in a submission to the Supreme Court in the case of JFS, a Jewish school in Brent, which is fighting to overturn a ruling that it broke the Race Relations Act.

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